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Positive dog training is an easy way to train your dog. By rewarding the behavior you want to see, your dog will seek the reward with the correct behavior. Your dog will choose the behavior each time that get’s the best response in their eyes. These four positive dog training skills will help your dog learn anything you choose!

Repeat Positive Behaviors

All living things(except some humans) repeat behaviors that are rewarding and avoid behaviors that are not rewarding. If you can remember this one simple idea, you can teach every behavior that you want your dog to do and change every behavior that you do not want.

You don’t have to punish the dog in order to make the behavior unrewarding. You just have to make the thing you want rewarding enough that the dog will make the correct choice. Think in terms of what you want the dog to do and not what you don’t want the dog to do. Reward generously and consistently for the behaviors you want while ignoring the behaviors you don’t want. Rewards can be anything that motivates your dog. It can be dog treats, dog food, dog toys, or praise.

Your Dog Already Knows Everything

The dog already knows how to do everything you are going to teach him. He already knows how to sit and lie down. He can come bounding at you from a distance or stay in one place for long periods of time – when he wants to. All you are going to do is teach him the English word for these behaviors. You will teach him the word associated with the behavior by making it rewarding and fun. Your dog always has a choice. If you’re a good trainer, you’ll program a pattern of responses in his brain so that he will want to do them again and eagerly choose to do so when you ask.

One Cue For One Skill

Dogs can only learn one behavior for any particular cue. They don’t understand that a word can have several different meanings. For the best training success, everyone must use both verbal and visual cues consistently. “Down” must mean lie down while “Off” means to get off of something such as the couch. If each word means a different result and your dog will seek the behavior that gets the reward for that word.

Dogs Do What Dogs Do

Dogs are very skilled manipulators and are very self-serving. There is no right or wrong in a dog’s world. Punishing the dog just teaches him to endure punishment. It’s abusive and pointless. Like people, dogs have their good days and bad days. Patience until your dog performs the desired behavior and correct timing with a reward will show your dog how to please you. Dogs naturally want to please. They desire rewards and praise. A dog searching for praise is a much happier dog than one hiding from punishment.

Working on these four positive dog training skills will help your dog be a confident, smart learner. Each time the reward marks the correct behavior, your dog will be training himself to be your very best friend.

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